Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Inspector General by Nikolai Gogol

The Inspector GeneralSUMMARY (from Goodreads): The corrupt officials of a small town in Tsarist Russia mistake a penniless clerk from Moscow for a government agent in Gogol’s satire on the grotesque side of human nature. A play described by Vladimir Nabokov as the greatest ever written in the Russian language.


The play jumps right in the middle of the action and moves at a fast pace.

What I liked: Gogol’s satire is hilarious and compelling, making the reader laugh out loud and read the play through in one sitting. The language is beautiful and conveys the sarcasm and hidden meanings perfectly.

What I disliked: As it is usual with plays, I needed a couple of pages to remember who each of the characters is and flip back to the character list a few times.

This book is a timeless piece, as it explores the corruption of politicians and officials.

RECOMMENDATION: I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to read something entertaining which at the same time makes you think.


  1. I've only read The Overcoat by Gogol, a short story of his, but I really, really liked it and I think I should read more by him. Definitely more by Russian authors in general.

  2. I've read The Overcoat too, but I only faintly remember it - probably liked it, but thought it was average. This one is much better.


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